(KXNET) –February marks National Children’s Dental Health Month, and it’s an important time to remember to check on the health of your children’s teeth.

What began as a one-day reminder back in 1941 quickly evolved into a month-long event. The purpose of National Children’s Dental Health month is to raise awareness about the importance of children having healthy teeth and gums. Children should start seeing a dentist regularly, starting at age one.

“Having that first visit helps us make sure we are starting things off on the right foot,” said Dr. Taylor Zmoos at Dakota Kids Dentistry. “We are making wise decisions while they are young so that we do not run into issues and be more reactive. Then, when they are older, we can be proactive, and hopefully, prevent issues and decay at a young age.”

Most parents don’t bring their children in regularly or as soon as they should, and as a result, sometimes it’s more than just their baby teeth being affected when coming into the dentist later on in life.

“If a five-year-old is coming in and they have a cavity on a tooth that’s supposed to be in there until they are 10 or 11,” explained Registered Dental Hygienist, Reeann Magandy, “we want to treat it. What a lot of people do not know is that if the baby tooth becomes affected, it can actually affect the adult teeth already developing beneath the gums.”

Regular check-in visits with your dentist can help your children get into healthy habits at a young age because their teeth are in their mouth longer than we think.

“Baby teeth are in there until the kids are around 13-14,” stated Magandy, “depending on if they are delayed at losing them or if they’re early. The earliest these can fall out is around age 10 or 11.”

Starting healthy habits young can help children get into good health. Getting more information from your dentist can help a parent keep up with just one of many children’s needs.